Dag Stokke, who has played keyboards for Norwegian hard rockers TNT since 1987, lost his battle with cancer early this morning (Wednesday, April 27). He was only 44 years old.
TNT drummer Morten "Diesel" Dahl told VG Nett about his bandmate, "He was simply a wonderful human being — very positive and [full of] life."
Former TNT singer Tony Harnell wrote on his blog, "I can't believe I am writing these words. Sadly, this morning I have to say goodbye to Dag Stokke, my longtime friend and keyboardist for TNT, who has left us today way too young. He fought a hard battle with dignity, courage and optimism. I will always see him in my mind, smiling at me from across the stage. A gentle giant, a huge spirit, truly an angel on this earth. I loved him very much, as did so many that he touched in his brief time here. My thoughts are with his son Jonathan and his family and friends. Have a good journey, my friend. I will miss you dearly."
Stokke's last performance with TNT took place in early March at the House Of Metal festival in Umeå, Sweden. He also played with the band at Rockefeller in Oslo, Norway in January around the time when he was first diagnosed with cancer.
"It is a terrible disease," Dahl told VG Nett. "We had all hoped and believed that he would be able to beat the cancer. Everything happened so incredibly fast. It is simply brutal. We are completely devastated."
Dag Stokke first started working with TNT in 1987 during the band's "Tell No Tales" tour.
"We toured the world together," said Dahl. "He was a unique musician and human being"
Stokke owned an online mastering service called OnlineMastering. He played on every TNT album from "Realized Fantasies" (1992) to "A Farewell to Arms" (2010). However, he was never a permanent TNT member.
"I'm cool with my position in TNT," he said in a 2010 interview, "Some people ask me why I'm not in the pictures and why I'm not spotlighted [like the other musicians in TNT]. That's just the way it is, and I'm completely OK with that. I got to experience the rock star lifestyle so much in 1987 and especially in 1989 and a little bit into 1992, so that dream has been fulfilled. If I'm not [featured in any of the photos], that's totally cool, because I know I've been part of all this."